Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Car Play Mat!

Everybody loves a car play mat!  Personalizing it makes it even more fun!

A couple of people have asked me about my play mat, so I thought I would post a mini-tutorial!

Graph Paper
A toy car
Acrylic Paints
Clear Coat
Sharpie - 2 sizes
Sewing Machine and Thread
Dam Canvas (Be sure you are at the right store before you call it that.  I bought mine from a Farm supply store, Smithfield Implement in Utah.  Dam canvas is used for irrigation, it is nice and thick and comes very wide.  You can also buy canvas at most fabric stores.)

1.  Decide how big you want your mat.  Mine is about 60"X31".  Add 2" to the raw edges, before I hemmed the raw edges my mat measured 60"x33".

2.  you need to hem the raw edges of you canvas.  Press to the wrong side 1/2" and then again.  Stitch it down.

3.  Now that you know how big your mat is, you need to start the lay out of you "city".  I grabbed a toy car and measured it.  Doubled it and that determined the width of my roads.  I used graph paper and drew a layout to scale, I erased tons and changed things around.  I decided that my "city" needed to have: Grammy's house, Grandma's house, airport, gas station, grocery, post office, fire station, police station, church, school, playground, lake, consturction site, playground, and a roundabout!

4.  After you have your mini version figured out, cut out to scale the outlines of your buildings and place them on your canvas (tape them if you need to).  Using a pencil, ruler, and whatever else you need - sketch your "city" on to the canvas.  The reason you use paper outlines of your buildings is to help in the transfer of your design from paper to canvas, and then you can make adjustments if you need to.

5.  Now you are ready to paint.  Place the mat on either a protected suface or a surface you don't care about.  The paint  might bleed through!

6.  Start painting your creation.  I am  no artist, all my buildings are plain brick and boring, it was a first try!  Be creative, your kids are going to love it no matter what!  Add trees, flowers, parking lines, etc...

7.  For cleaning up lines I used a sharpie, for fine detail a fine sharpie.

8.  When you are satisfied and it is dry take it outside.  Spary a coat or two of clear coat to help protect the mat.  Let it dry and you are ready to play!

I also used this same method to create a Hopscotch Mat for indoor play!


Jill said...

This is really cute. You are a good artist!

Jen said...

Wow, look at the detail you put into that thing. Mine would NEVER look nearly as good as yours. These hands are not made for painting or drawing.

Indy said...

I want one!

Road Mats

Anonymous said...

Your mat is really cute. Can you fold it up to store in a bucket with the cars or does that mess up the paint?

Micah C said...

You can fold it up, roll it up, etc... It does not mess up the paint. Mine is a few years old now and still looks great!

Jjbaby07 said...

Do you have a specific clear coat you use I was looking but I was a little over whelmed by the floor to ceiling isle of paint and stuff. This is such an awesome project. I want to make a farming one my 5 year old says the store bought ones are for babies since there is no elevator to unload your grain at.

Micah C said...

A Farm one will be so cute!! I just used Rust Oleum Satin Clear Coat. It is smelly when you are spraying so be sure you are outside or well ventilated. I would love to see pictures when you are done. Best of luck! Thanks for reading.

Car Mat said...

Car mats are getting very popular among every type of car owner , there are many advantages of using these types of mats. There are many types of car mats are available such as decorative car mats, fancy car mats, simple car mats and many more.

Anonymous said...

GREAT playmat! I've been looking online for a tutorial and yours was the most in depth and your playmat is by far the cutest with so much detail. Since I don't live near a farm supply store, I'll probably get duck canvas - how similar is that to dam canvas?